Courageously smitten


Our work in cities is a convergence of direction, personal journey and emergence that results in new, emerging possibilities. These possibilities are both things we dream of and recognize, as well as possibilities that are unexpected, unknown to us until they arise.

Consider David Whyte, in The Three Marriages:

Being smitten by a path, a direction, an intuited possibility, no matter the territory it crosses, we can feel in youth or at any threshold, as if life has found us at last… But to start the difficult path to what we want, we also have to be serious about what we want.

Following this path of increasing levels of seriousness, we reach a certain threshold where our freedom to choose seems to disappear and is replaced by an understanding that we were made for the world in a very particular way and that this way of being is at bottom nonnegotiable. Like the mountain or the sky, it just is. It is as if we choose and choose until there is actually not a choice at all. 

A sense of direction and purpose emerges in our lives as we make our way along a very personal journey in life. Thresholds emerge to challenge us, inviting us to make our way to new possibilities. At this heart of this dynamic, we are courageously smitten with a path. This is the thread that pulls us through, allowing us to emerge to new destinations.

This dynamic takes place at individual and collective scales. At the scales of me and my city. We create our cities, and our cities are a platform for our never-ending journey.

John O’Donohue’s blessing, Time for Necessary Decision, shapes the arc of Nest City – these words stand out as I explore (un)known possibilities for us and our cities:

May we have the courage to take the step

Into the unknown that beckons us


What are you/we courageously smitten with?

What are you/we courageously stepping into?


_____ _____ _____

This post is part of Chapter 7 – (Un)known Possibilities. Here are some plot helpers of Nest City: The Human Drive to Thrive in Cities, the book I am sharing here while I search for a publisher:



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